Customer Reviews for

Paris to the Moon

Average Rating 3.5
( 30 )
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5 Star

(12)

4 Star

(7)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(5)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

From a Parisian

Being Parisian myself, and in US for 5 years it is a great pleasure to read about my hometown and its way of life, seen through the eyes of an outsider. It is a delight of truths about the city's synergie, about the french culture, and about a foreigner who wants to und...
Being Parisian myself, and in US for 5 years it is a great pleasure to read about my hometown and its way of life, seen through the eyes of an outsider. It is a delight of truths about the city's synergie, about the french culture, and about a foreigner who wants to understand and integrate a new world, but will always be on the edge of it. Believe me, the challenges are incredibly similar whem you are a Parisian living in Boston, or New York!! This book gave me a lesson of humility about my culture and let me know that the same confusions, frustrations and joys are shared by anyone who has the chance to live in another culture.

posted by Anonymous on January 19, 2001

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

irritatingly self-indulgent

The author is the kind of traveler who makes other American
travelers cringe, and in just a few years, he has evidently become
the kind of self-absorbed New Yorker who is unloved everywhere.
Instead of embracing the experience of living in a new country,
he is a ...
The author is the kind of traveler who makes other American
travelers cringe, and in just a few years, he has evidently become
the kind of self-absorbed New Yorker who is unloved everywhere.
Instead of embracing the experience of living in a new country,
he is a rude guest, constantly commenting on his hosts' shortcomings.

This is an irritatingly self-indulgent story on an old subject,
done before by many other better writers. There is nothing new
or original here. I cannot understand the reviews.

As for the pretense of being a concerned parent wanting
to get his child away from American culture...PLEASE...if he was
tortured by his son's obsession with Barney, it's because he
brought Barney there in his suitcase!

This family eventually leaves France, commenting that they do
not "live a full life" there...Not surprising, they live outside,
and stay outside Parisian life.

I kept hoping for some real contact with the French, some insight.
Something other than an experience with a local shop keeper
or taxi cab driver. But this is someone whose first actions in Paris
included hooking up American cable in his apartment. He learns
that you can get a wonderful apartment in Paris...it just takes money
and connections. He winds up with a beautiful place on the Left Bank...
a typical expat experience...

I have met these "journalists" before. They live in Paris, Rome,
Beiruit, Bejing...yet somehow manage to never leave their comfort
zone. How very boring.

posted by 2784988 on January 20, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2010

    irritatingly self-indulgent

    The author is the kind of traveler who makes other American
    travelers cringe, and in just a few years, he has evidently become
    the kind of self-absorbed New Yorker who is unloved everywhere.
    Instead of embracing the experience of living in a new country,
    he is a rude guest, constantly commenting on his hosts' shortcomings.

    This is an irritatingly self-indulgent story on an old subject,
    done before by many other better writers. There is nothing new
    or original here. I cannot understand the reviews.

    As for the pretense of being a concerned parent wanting
    to get his child away from American culture...PLEASE...if he was
    tortured by his son's obsession with Barney, it's because he
    brought Barney there in his suitcase!

    This family eventually leaves France, commenting that they do
    not "live a full life" there...Not surprising, they live outside,
    and stay outside Parisian life.

    I kept hoping for some real contact with the French, some insight.
    Something other than an experience with a local shop keeper
    or taxi cab driver. But this is someone whose first actions in Paris
    included hooking up American cable in his apartment. He learns
    that you can get a wonderful apartment in Paris...it just takes money
    and connections. He winds up with a beautiful place on the Left Bank...
    a typical expat experience...

    I have met these "journalists" before. They live in Paris, Rome,
    Beiruit, Bejing...yet somehow manage to never leave their comfort
    zone. How very boring.

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2004

    The REAL Paris experience

    I cannot believe how many books there are out there about seemingly well-to-do journalists (Susan Turnbull Almost French) and others such as Gopnik, who either move here (to Paris) with family, meet a RICH French boyfriend, or live here with relatives or friends who have already lived in Paris for many years. I came to Paris on my own accord, found my own place, landed a job on my own and experienced the REAL Paris, not the cliches described in most books. Being alone in a big city gives you real insight, because you cannot come home to your boyfriend/wife/husband or take refuge at a friend's or relative's house. I came here after grad school because I wanted to experience something I had never done before and the only way to really do that is alone, something most of these writers don't seem to have a clue about. Glad to see there are readers out there who obviously can see through the self-indulgent dravel and cliches published about a city that is a huge conglomeration of people that are as complex, rude, funny, friendly and distant as those of any other western metropolitan city. Sorry to burst everyone's bubble, but Paris is really just another very big city with perhaps more museums and history than some other cities. The magic is in the experience and when you bring the family along you can't claim a true Paris experience. And as far as his toddler son being fluent in French, well, I was fluent in 4 languages by the time I was 8. Kids are fast learners, what's the big deal?

    2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2001

    a very tired subject

    I have lived in Paris for the past ten years. I have lived in every district excluding maybe three, I, along with other American and British friends have worked in restaurants, bars, temp work, and in major corporations. Every neighborhood has a different atmosphere and every work place as well, Mr. Gopnik's book is a very typical New Yorker's view of the world, which is narrow minded. NY is not the center of the world and everything does not need to be compared it it, especially by a man who lived in the same area all five years of his stay and never lived or worked with French people. Sorry, not only is the book boring, with its chapters on a fax machine and fax paper, but the fatherhood thing was common as well and how rude to come install your self and critize a place that never need your opion. Paris is a little hop over the Atlantic, NOT the moon! To relish over the differences without end it maybe interesting for someone undertravelled, but as for the rest of us, it is relly a disappointment and I will try to get a refund at the boutique I purchased it from.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2001

    A lethal combination

    The most pretentious and self-aggrandizing essayist in the US takes on Paris. It's like mixing arsenic with hemlock. This is drivel from the first word to the last. Read Janet Flanner instead. THAT is the real McCoy, and this is French hogwash.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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